Our school was lucky enough to receive free workshops for our grade 6 classes from Scientists in School (I think we did the “Classy Critters” workshop) and it was AMAZING! The workshops would cost about $200 per class – it seems well worth it. My students love science anyway, but they were very engaged, pushed out of their comfort zone and challenged. As a bonus, I got to sit back and watch them explore.
Our Scientist was very fun; enthusiastic, knowledgable and adapted to what the kids were asking about. She brought vertebrate and invertebrate specimens that the students could touch, pick up, examine and be a bit grossed out by. She had a fetal pig, a bat, a mouse, a squid, a shark, snakes, insects and more. My kids were very squeamish at first, but by the end they were all picking things up, touching them, getting in close with a magnifying glass and asking to take pictures to show their parents!
I got to see what my kids understood and remembered from our Biodiversity learning, they got to spend nearly 3 hours with a hands on experience and see how important their learning is in ‘real life’. I even had one of my students (who was absolutely not going to touch anything at the beginning of the workshop) tell me that she’d like to be a zoologist and that she really liked touching real animals!
It was so fun, and I highly recommend it! Check out some of the pictures I got: